MEGATech Reviews: Nom Nom Galaxy for PC
Nom Nom Galaxy is difficult, tedious, and at times frustrating, yet the satisfaction of a job well done manages to make it all worth it.
Pros
  • Lot of gameplay for little cost
  • Trademark PixelJunk charm
  • Irresistibly engaging
Cons
  • More direction would be nice
  • Controls could be tighter
  • At times a tedious, frustrating grind
7.5Overall Score

Nom Nom Galaxy is the latest game in the PixelJunk series. You play as a lowly robot working for a soup empire, scouring distant planets for ingredients to make new and popular soups. Its a simulation of a blue collar job and a realistic one at that. At times the work can be rewarding, and at other times it can be a frustrating, thankless grind.

This isnt going to be like most videogame reviews. The protocol for reviewing games goes as such: play the game, beat the game, review the game. Its simple, except when it isnt. Nom Nom Galaxy proved to be one of those times when it wasn’t.

Q-Games doesnt exactly hold your hand in Nom Nom Galaxy. Then again, in their defense, Nom Nom Galaxy isnt a particularly complicated affair. Not on the surface, at least. You build an office, you build some soup machines and soup rockets, and you go about finding ingredients to combine into delicious soups. Pop a couple ingredients into a machine, let it mix, and then throw that can into a rocket where it will be delivered to waiting consumers.

It sounds simple, but to call it such wouldnt be giving Q-Games their due credit. Its a nuanced experienced, and once you start laying out your factory, clearing space for a farm, and figuring out the best ways to traverse the planet, all while racing against a rival soup company, you begin to realize that Nom Nom Galaxys simple mechanic rests within a very challenging framework.

Thrown in the Deep End

That framework is so challenging in fact, that it took four goes on the initial planet (after the tutorial) to beat my rival to 100% market share. And during the first three attempts, I never managed to grab more than 26% of the market share.

MEGATech Reviews: Nom Nom Galaxy for PC

Surely my own comical ineptitude plays a part, but I dont accept the full blame. I wouldve liked a little more direction. While playing Nom Nom Galaxy, Im plagued with the feeling that theres more to it than Im fully understanding. Quick control shortcuts, better methods for precise digging and building placement, and other things like that. This is the sort of the game that immediately drives you to YouTube to observe other strategies.

That isnt necessarily a bad thing, though. Nom Nom Galaxy is rooted in trial and error. Each time I went back I did a little better, employing helpful new methods I had picked up and discarding old ideas that didnt work out. One thing I eventually realized was that I was getting too ambitious. Thescreenshots show gigantic, maze-like soup factories, but the factory that ultimately led me to victory held no more than four or five different soup machines in one long, horizontal corridor. I simply focused on what worked, rather than aiming for variety.

Stick to Soup

While the bulk of the gameplay is a business sim mixed with Terraria, Nom Nom Galaxy also features a tower defense component. Your rival will occasionally send ships to sabotage you and youll have to line the top of your buildings with guns to fight them off. Youll usually have to climb up there yourself too, as the ships will frequently dip beneath buildings and out of sight of your towers.

MEGATech Reviews: Nom Nom Galaxy for PC

Im all for a little corporate sabotage, and I love the tower defense genre, but this element really feels tacked on. Not only does it add little, but it takes an already hectic experience and adds a level of frustration that doesnt need to be there. Whats worse, you cant send ships of your own, which would at least even the playing field a little.

Simple, Effective Presentation

Nom Nom Galaxy isnt a AAA title, so it doesnt look or sound like a AAA title, but thats okay. The gameplay isnt the only thing it shares with Terraria. The visuals are similar to the 2D sandbox title (or Starbound, for that matter) and the music and sound effects arent anything to write home about, but they work. What you see is what you get, and the screenshots represent Nom Nom Galaxys visual package just fine.

Its the Little Things

The details are what really get under your skin. When you go to place a building, the screen will automatically zoom out a bit to give you a better view of what youre working with. Unfortunately, this often resulted in me accidentally placing my building as the screen was moving and therefore placing it slightly off from where I intended – which usually meant I had to kill it with my buzzsaw, wasting the time and matter I put into it, and place it again.

MEGATech Reviews: Nom Nom Galaxy for PC

Sometimes land that you thought would support a building willjust give away under its weight and the building willsink down, which means it willbe out-of-line with your corridor, which again results in the wasted time and matter of having to destroy it and rebuild it.

The buzzsaw is unwieldy, and I would constantly cut away land that I meant to leave intact. The only way to replace land is one block at a time, which is useless aside from having to fill a random hole. All this means that you need to be extremely cautious and slow, which is hard to do while the clock is ticking. And if you do end up cutting away more than you wanted to, you have to get creative with your building placement.

MEGATech Reviews: Nom Nom Galaxy for PC

Yet despite all of these frustrating hang-ups, I found myself coming back to Nom Nom Galaxy again and again. You want to perfect it, almost in spite of all the nitpicks, as if theyre not flaws of the game but rather obstacles in the way of creating the ultimate soup empire. Theres nothing quite like Nom Nom Galaxy out there, and while its far from a perfect experience, its one that sim and crafting fans shouldnt miss.

Even Robots Need Friends


Nom Nom Galaxy features a cooperative component, where you can team up with a friend to take on your rival together. Since I dont know anyone who has the game, I didnt get a chance to check it out, but its not hard to imagine what it would entail. Co-op play almost always doubles the fun of any game that offers it, and in this case have two players would cut down on a lot of the grind, too. Its definitely something worth considering if youre thinking about picking up the game.

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